The Quest for Stripes: The Rest of the Story

Well friends, it’s the third of January and I’m still a sergeant.

Yes, it’s true, no staff sergeant for me.

Turns out there was a problem with paperwork and being a couple weeks shy of eligibility.

My personnel people said “my bad” and that I’ll have to wait a few weeks. My only beef is this is the third time my chain has been yanked. The first was before Iraq when they said I would be eligible with an often-used waiver. That wasn’t true. The second time, they came to me during Iraq and asked if I wanted to get promoted, only to say I wasn’t eligible when I was preparing for the board.

This time, though, I made it through the whole process, through the board and everything, only to find some snag in my eligibility again.

The added caveat to the situation is now I have less than a year left before I exit the Army. To make E6 you have to have at least a year left. Since I would have to reapply for promotion and wait another period of time, I’d be short.

So no more stripes for me, I’m afraid. At least they let me keep the ones I have. It’s pretty much the clinching deal to motivate me to leave when my time is through. Not that this alone drove me to run, screaming; but it’s indicative of my entire Army experience. I’ll let someone else be “hooah” for a bit.

But not to fear, there’s still a good chance that I’ll get snagged for another tour of Iraq, so all that “planned exit time” gig is moot. That does mean another volume of pithy posts. I’ll keep you all posted on that business. The higher-ups are hashing through all that as we speak. Our president says there’s lots to do and lots more troops needed overseas.


About salemonz

Born in San Diego, Calif. Raised as a Navy Brat, I jumped ship and crossed over to the Army. Served as an enlisted journalist for a bunch of years, then helped the DoD figure out what the hell to do with social media. After the Army, now I drift down the river of life, trying not to be a jerk.

10 responses to “The Quest for Stripes: The Rest of the Story”

  1. BWJones says :

    Typical……. typical of the Army…… typical of the current POTUS…… If it makes you feel any better, you’ll always be SSG Salmons to me. 🙂

  2. Lessie says :

    That is a real bummer — especially after passing the board!

  3. Lessie says :

    How do you read so many books at once?

  4. salmons says :

    Thanks BW! I won’t let it go to my head 😉

    Lessie: The trick is not to actually read them, but to pick books that will make you seem a lot smarter!

  5. wilsonian says :

    You obviously have a calmer temperment than I. I’d have a stroke if I had to put with the constant frustration.

  6. Radio Free Babylon says :

    You’ll always be Lieutenant General Salmons to me.

  7. salmons says :

    Radio: Fookin’ awesome 🙂

  8. salmons says :

    Wilsonian: I hide my rage.

    But you’re right, it drives me to near blasphemy at times.

  9. Momma Finch says :

    Finch learned that even when his time “was up” there is the small print….he was still obligated to 2 additional years in the reserves – which were all deploying at that time. So, he re-upped again. It surprises me that the Army (and probably other branches) don’t take care of the people they have that really care. Guess it gets difficult to hold on to the “passion” when you continued to get stepped on. Reading your blog and others (Finch,Ian, etc.) I am saddened to see/feel the loss. God Bless, hang in there, hope something changes. Just heard POTIS – am I too stupid to think he’s doing the right move? Don’t you feel we need to finish what we started – at the minimum for you that serve – at the max for those that gave their lives? Am I Alice? LOL

  10. salmons says :

    Finch is good people. I think he’s a lot like me–not quite sure what to do with himself but with enough personal pride that we both want to do a good job wherever we are.

    I’m looking at the possibility of serving longer myself, not because I love war, but in the end, because there is still a major need for people in the service.

    I think he’ll be alright. I run in to enough Finches and Ians to keep my faith up in people.

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